By: An Adopt4Life Community Parent
In the coming weeks, we will celebrate the 10-year anniversary of first meeting our youngest. The moments leading up to that meeting and the months immediately following it are forever etched in my memory. As a family of four, we had traveled half way across the world to meet a little soul that would live in our hearts for the rest of our lives. The journey was hard. We were exhausted. Our youngest son was ill. There we sat, in a tiny room, in a foreign land, waiting for our daughter to be introduced to us.
When she entered the room with her caregiver, I was immediately drowned by the beautiful eyes she used to see the world. They were far too serious for a twenty-month-old. Her caregiver was pushing her toward us. I could feel her hesitation, her fear, with every bone in my body. Next came the defeat. I watched her crumble in front of me from the inside out, as she was placed in my over-eager arms. She had no choice.
In that moment, I knew that I would take on the task of moving her from a birth into captivity and introducing her to the freedom of choice that the human spirit longs for… that kids born into health here in Canada take for granted. I recognized that her skin color was different from mine, my husbands and our two boys. I knew that I was removing her from her country of origin, her traditional foods, scents and textures, sounds and movements…. but I felt up for the challenge.
This challenge has not been taken lightly. It has required constant learning, humility and faith. Our family has worked diligently to make links between her past, her present and her future. We have picked apart our own lives, spent time thinking about what each of our stories has to offer to the family picture. All of this with the belief that we can accompany our children on a journey that that goes beyond what makes us different and toward our shared humanity.